Places to visit in Lucknow
Lucknow, the capital city of Uttar Pradesh, the largest state in India, is full of monuments from the British and Islamic pasts of India, and these monuments can be seen dotted along the skyline of the city. During ancient times, it was the capital of the Awadh region, and then, after going through Islamic rule in 1857, it came under British rule. The documented history of the city does not go beyond the 11th century. Originally built on the banks of the Gomti River, the city is now spread equally on either side of the river. Listed below are some places worth a visit while in Lucknow, known as the City of Nawabs.
Bada Imambara: Built by the Nawab of Awadh, Asaf ud-Daula in the year 1784, it is also known as Asafi Imambara. The structure is known for its mysterious pathways to reach the terrace in more than a hundred ways, but the return is possible on only two specific paths. Adorned with beautiful chandeliers and domes, the structure has a beautiful garden in front and is well-maintained.
Chota Imambara: This beautiful structure was constructed in the year 1838 by the then Nawab of Awadh, Mohammed Ali Shah, as a congregation hall. It took more than 50 years to complete this structure, and Mohammed Ali Shah built it as a mausoleum for himself. Certain decorative elements and designs are taken from the Bada Imambara structure.
Rumi Darwaza: It is a large and imposing gateway built in the year 1784 and is located near the Bada Imambara. Also known as Turkish Gate, this 60 feet tall structure was constructed by Nawab Asad ud-Daula. It was built as an entrance gateway to the city of Lucknow, now called Old Lucknow. As the city expanded, its purpose became obsolete, and it remained only as a monument.
Bhool Bhulaiya: It is a labyrinth of interconnected passages that will awe the visitors with its mystery, suspense, and innovation. Located close to the Bada Imambara, visitors experience great thrills and excitement while navigating through these amazing passages, tunnels, and chambers. Nearly 500 identical doorways and over 1000 passages play their part in creating a mesmerising web around the visitors.
British Residency: It is a group of buildings located within a precinct that served as the official residence and partial office of the British during colonial times. These were built during the last 20 years of the 18th century. The place was part of the action during the historic uprising and mutiny of 1857. The bullet marks on the walls speak about the gunfight that day. The buildings are in ruins now.
Hazratganj: It is the most important place in Lucknow. After all the sightseeing and monument hopping is done, Hazratganj is the place to stroll, relax, and soak in the aura of Lucknow. The number of eateries dishing out outstanding local street foods and the numerous shops selling great artefacts would make a dent in the purse but be worth every penny.
Lucknow Zoo: Officially known as Nawab Ali Shah Prani Udyan, Lucknow Zoo is spread across an area of about 72 acres. Named after the last Nawab of Awadh, the zoo is located in the heart of the city and was established way back in 1921 to commemorate the visit of the Prince of Wales to the city. More than 1,000 animals belonging to more than 100 species are housed in the zoo. There are also about 40 species of fish in the aquarium section. The nature learning centre, auditorium, and butterfly park are also seen in the zoo.
Janeshwar Mishra Park: Said to be one of the largest public parks in Asia, it was built between 2012 and 2017. Replete with a jogging path, cycling track, sports centre, playground, lakes, and many other facilities, the entire park runs on solar energy. Named after the politician Janeshwar Mishra, it is a great place to relax and stroll around towards the end of the day.